London: William Heinemann Ltd., 1994. First edition, only printing. Hardcover. This is the first edition of the second volume of Churchill’s War Papers. The War Papers volumes are the companion document volumes accompanying Volume VI of Churchill’s Official Biography. This volume contains documents from May 1940, the month that Churchill became Prime Minister and Germany invaded France and the low countries, through December 1940, with Britain having fought off the immediate threat of Nazi invasion in the Battle of Britain, but nonetheless weak, isolated, and starved for supplies by the U-boat menace. This second War Papers volume was the penultimate volume of the Official Biography completed by Sir Martin Gilbert (1936-2015) before his death. This British first edition is considerably more scarce than the U.S. first edition, which is similar in appearance.
This copy is very good in a near fine dust jacket. The red cloth binding is square and tight with minimal shelf wear confined to extremities, but a bit concave at the upper spine from the weight of the massive text block. The contents are bright and clean. We find no spotting or previous ownership marks, and only slight dust soiling to the top edge of the text block. The dust jacket is unclipped and entirely complete with no losses or tears with light sunning to the spine. The dust jacket is protected beneath a removable, archival quality clear cover.
The Official Biography of Winston Churchill, initiated by Randolph Churchill but substantially completed by Martin Gilbert, is an epic piece of scholarship about a singularly epic life. Gilbert saw completion of all eight main text volumes and seventeen accompanying document or "Companion" volumes. The eight main text volumes were published between 1966 and 1988. Publication of the Companion volumes continues today.
Reference: Zoller A302f2. Item #004387